Green Day @ Barclays, 3.15.17

I’ve seen Green Day a handful of times now. I don’t know how many; I don’t keep track. But I do know that music brings people together and anytime Matt and I are brought together for Green Day, it’s a good time. I failed to secure GA tickets when the presale came out months ago and we debated what or how to get seats for the past several months. 

Well, it came down to game time this year. Or, I guess you could say, it came down to Fuck Time. We bought seats in the nose bleeds on StubHub four hours before and we thought, well, it’s Green Day and our seats for PNC in Holmdel, NJ in 2010 sucked, too, but it’ll still be awesome to be in the room. When we arrived at our seats, which were basically on the right side of the stage against the wall, Matt and his girlfriend sat down and I went to ‘use the bathroom,’ aka scope out new seat as I’ve never been one to accept the shitty seats I’ve been dealt, even if they were the ones I bought. Nobody puts baby in the nosebleeds.

I found an area, still on the second level, but lower than where we were, directly across from the stage, that was inhabited by a railing, three or four high top tables and a few folding chairs, with a few people milling about. I scoped out the area, leaning against the railing, seeing if anyone would tell me move, and after 3 minutes, I rallied to the troops to relocate. The view was much better and we were all more than happy to sit (or lean) for the duration of the concert. Photos and more thoughts after the jump. 

Against Me opened and they were great, but we didn’t really pay attention to them. The setlist was the standard setlist that they’ve been playing on this arm of the tour and it included King For a Day, which although it’s a song all of us would like them to stop playing for the rest of time, I couldn’t help but sing along. Matt and I performed as much of the American Idiot choreography as we could. Some dude rocked out during Longview and BJA asked him after, ”are you trying to take my damn job?” BJA asked after, and I’m pretty sure the fan Billie Joe pulled up onstage to sing Know Your Enemy didn’t actually know the lyrics. 

I have a newly found respect for a couple of the songs from Revolution Radio that they played, mostly Youngblood and Forever Now

Billie Joe, a master in the art of subtlety let out an exasperated, “Fuck you, Donald Trump!” at the end of Letterbomb

St. Jimmy was out of this world energized. Always a favorite of mine to see performed. 

We watched on in horror, and also laughing, at the two kids who were sitting in folding chairs covering their ears and sulking while they’re parents (probably mid-to-late 30 something’s) danced and embarrassed the hell out of them.

The GA area was outrageously small and had no energy in it whatsoever. The three of us plus another couple who were probably of a similar age had more energy than all of the kids on the ground. I’ll just say this: There were far too many seats on the floor and the first rule of Green Day is: you don’t sit at Green Day

The energy was high for the first encore which included American Idiot followed by the sensible 7-minute Jesus of Suburbia

Lastly, I’m glad they’ve gone back to ending with Good Riddance. It’s just not the same when they don’t. 

i have a thousand other thoughts but they’d make no sense and this “review” is pretty consciousness as it is. Green Day concerts, regardless of where you’re sitting, are always a good time and should always be attended when possible. They bring people together and get people off their news feeds, even if only for two-and-a-half hours. The backdrops, pyro, and lighting were fucking awesome, too. Snaps for whoever designed the tour. Last, but not least, here are a few photos:

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So much pyro onstage!

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Tiny GA section. 

This Brutal Love: Green Day Plays Barclays, April 7th, 2013

Nothing describes a Green Day concert on the floor better than the title of a song off of Tre, “Brutal Love.” You will sweat. You will get kicked. You will get stepped on. You will get shoved. You may find yourself in a mosh pit. You may even get kicked in the head by a crowd surfer. But all the while you’re smiling because there’s no place you’d rather be than down in front, and center, at a Green Day concert.

My friends and I were about midway back when we finally made our way down to the floor at Barclays. The venue was far from capacity and the opening act (Best Coast) was far from going onstage. If this was as far as we got, that’d be fine (but we knew we’d get closer eventually).

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Best Coast eventually came on and in retrospect, I enjoyed them (and it turns out I’d heard them before because they have a song on the Girls soundtrack!). But really, does Green Day need an opening anymore? It’s like giving Paul McCartney an opening act – you just don’t. Anyways, Best Coast was good, but after listening to them for 25 minutes and getting amped up with a recording of Queen (video! this video just makes me so happy), we were ready for the main event.

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The lights lowered and the guys came out, the crowd on the floor moved forward (obviously), and it began. They opened with 99 Revolutions off Tre, because it’s the 99 Revolutions Tour, duh. They played a half-dozen songs off the new trilogy and then started to dig pretty deep into their catalogue (Burn Out, Going To Pasalacqua, She, etc.).

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Now this side! AY-OOOOO!!

The full set list is available here. I think my favorites of the night were Stop When the Red Lights Flash, Holiday, St. Jimmy, Letterbomb, Stay the Night, and Brutal Love. Okay, I really liked all of them. But especially Stop When the Red Lights Flash. Holiday can still get a crowd going like it’s their job, as can Letterbomb. It was really cool to hear X Kid live (first time, I think?) and I was glad they closed their first set with Minority (Warning FTW!). 

Side note: The lighting designs on this tour were pretty fucking fantastic. Kudos to whoever programmed those lights.

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As promised in the beginning, we made our way to the front. Well, about four people deep. Not bad. Above is the packed stadium that was now entirely behind us. The crowd was amped again when their encore included American Idiot and everyone’s favorite 9-minute anthem to how much living in small town America blows, Jesus of Suburbia

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King for a Day.

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St. Jimmy!

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Brutal Love.

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I snapped this shot at some point during the show and I’m pretty sure it captures exactly how we all felt: on air, elated, although covered in sweat. There’s no better pain than the kind you feel after a Green Day concert. Your ears are ringing, the lower half of your body is in extreme pain from three hours of jumping and dancing, you have no voice, and you’re covered in sweat.

But like I said at the beginning: there’s no place you’d rather be then right there.

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Green Day Rocked Irving Plaza.

On September 15th, Billie Joe Armstrong proclaimed that he was all of our fathers and we couldn’t have been happier to welcome him into our families, even if it was just for one night.

The guys still know how to open a show after 20+ years of performing in tiny bars and huge stadiums. They opened with “Welcome To Paradise” and we, the crowd, agreed. We were in paradise. I was about five people from the stage during the opener and was almost pushed to the ground, and while Matt had his contact knocked into the side of his eye, we retreated for a moment to get ourselves together again and, of course, grab more drinks from the bar.

Green Day barreled through a 38 song set that we thought, and hoped, would never end. When Billie stated that he’d be playing all fucking night, we responded with elation. He talked briefly about performing on “Americas Got No Talent,” and just kept going further and further back into their catalogue to perform songs none of us would’ve expected to hear like Brat, Scattered, and J.A.R. (Jason Andrew Relva).

The crowd got going most noticeably during songs like Holiday (when Billie Joe jumped off the stage and up onto a risen platform stage right to play the Representative of NYC), Hitchin a Ride, and Murder City.

Towards the end of the night, it was well past midnight and so it was September 16th, the thirtieth anniversary of the death of Billie Joe’s father, and so he changed the lyric in Wake Me Up When September Ends to “30 years has gone so fast.” The moshing stopped for a moment, for at least the songs duration.

I think I can safely assert say that it was an unbelievable night for everyone present.

We exited Irving Plaza that night, sweaty and exhausted, opting not to try to catch a glimpse of the band as they exited. I walked across the island to 8th avenue totally blissed out (in addition to being sweaty, exhausted, deaf, and sore!) listening to the sounds of a relatively quiet 14th Street at post-1am on a Sunday morning.

Days later my wrist band is still proudly fastened around my wrist (although my hearing returned relatively quickly on Sunday).

The night went by way too quickly and it’s all still kind of a blur, but I wouldn’t have wanted to be anywhere else on September 15th, 2011.

Less than four months until Barclays!

I told you I’d find a way in and I did. My friend Andrew was able to buy tickets on Tuesday when they went on sale. Then we both ended up winning the Nokia/AT&T contest, so I was able to bring my friend Matt and we both rocked out. 

Last night was a dream. It was a wickedly awesome 38-song set. I don’t really have words to describe it, but today I was sore, exhausted, and last night I was sweaty and out of breath from the screaming and jumping. My point-and-shoot died after a photo or two, but here are some of my favorites that I took on my iPhone. I’ll write more later!